Field Building Development Workshop - Youth and Social Stability in Eurasia

Workshop Dates: September 30 - October 2, 2011
Hosted by the University of Texas at Austin

THE EURASIA PROGRAM of the Social Science Research Council (SSRC), in partnership with The University of Texas at Austin Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREEES), held an intensive three-day interdisciplinary field building development workshop for graduate students.


Dramatic social, political and demographic changes have occurred across Eurasia in the past twenty years. How have these changes affected youth? How might the resulting experiences and attitudes among youth influence social stability? What are the critical lines of similarity and difference in youth experiences and attitudes across, and within, the countries of Eurasia?

Studies of political engagement, social innovation, economic transformation, and religious mobilization across the globe have highlighted the unique position, and potential, of youth. To what extent can conceptual frameworks focusing on issues of youth and generation enhance our understanding of Eurasia? How can the varied and complex experiences of Eurasia challenge and expand our understanding of youth in times of political, cultural and social transformations?

This field development workshop convened nine junior scholars interested in issues related to youth and social stability for an intensive workshop led by a group of interdisciplinary senior scholars. The workshop brought together participants from across the social science disciplines whose work ranges from interpretive categories (e.g., generation, ethnicity, gender, class) to transformative processes (radicalization, stratification, the rise of social media, educational processes, migration). The meeting provided opportunities to discuss current work, develop ideas for future projects, and solicit feedback from, and network with, fellow scholars interested in youth issues within Eurasia.


  • Doug Blum, Providence College (Political Science)
  • Michael Dennis, University of Texas at Austin (Government)
  • Eric McGlinchey, George Mason (Government and Politics)
  • Olena Nikolayenko, Fordham (Political Science)


  • Meghanne Barker, University of Michigan (Anthropology), “The Pedagogy of Puppets and Dolls in Contemporary Kazakhstan”
  • Katya Dunajeva, University of Oregon (Political Science) “Systemic Disenfranchisement of Roma (Gypsy) Youth”
  • Colin Johnson, Brown University (Political Science), “Demographic Decline and Social Politics in the Russian Federation”
  • Nicole Butkovich Kraus, University of Wisconsin (Sociology),”Xenophobia among Russian Youth: Moving Forward or Looking Back?”
  • Jessica Mason, University of Wisconsin (Anthropology) “Family values, feminism, and the Putin generation: Abortion discourses in the New Russia”
  • Rebecca McBride, Vanderbilt University (Political Science), “Russia and the International Adoption Market”
  • Holly Myers, Columbia University (Slavic Language and Literature) “Portrayals of Women in Kyrgyz and Kazakh Literature”
  • Everett Peachey, University of Michigan (Sociology) ““International Educational Exchange and the Transformation of Eurasian Youth”
  • Andrea Reisman, University of Washington (Sociology) “Identity and Memory of Conflict Using a Framework of Masculinity”

Workshop funding is provided by the Department of State, Bureau of Intelligence and Research, Office of Outreach Title VIII Program for Research and Training on Eastern Europe and Eurasia (Independent States of the Former Soviet Union).